Baker Mayfield could sign new contract with Browns surprisingly early

Lamar Jackson and Josh Allen are both in line for lucrative new contracts, but Baker Mayfield may be the young quarterback who signs first. 

The Browns are widely regarded as an NFL team on the rise and they want to make sure they keep their young corps intact. A big part of that equation means keeping Baker Mayfield under center for the foreseeable future.

As a result, Mayfield could be the next young quarterback to sign a lucrative new extension. League observers are keeping a close eye on potential deals Lamar Jackson or Josh Allen might sign because they could reset the positional market. Mayfield isn’t in line for that type of contract, but that might allow him to sign the dotted line faster than his peers.

According to ESPN’s Jeremy Fowler, Mayfield there’s a strong chance that the Browns will “chip away” at a deal for Mayfield over the next several months. The chances are stacked against Mayfield’s new deal eclipsing $40 million per season like the league’s truly elite quarterbacks, but he should be well-positioned to sign a contract that will average over $30 million per season.

Is re-signing Baker Mayfield smart for the Browns?

From an economic perspective, it makes all the sense in the world for the Browns to ink Mayfield to a new contract as soon as possible. The minute any high-quality signal-caller signs a new contract it starts to gain value in comparison to its peers. The market for the game’s most important position will only continue to increase over time.

That’s why a new deal for Mayfield is smart for the Browns as long as they’re convinced he can lead them to a Super Bowl title. That doesn’t mean he needs to play like Patrick Mahomes. It only means he needs to be able to take advantage of the strong offensive talent surrounding him in Cleveland.

Locking in a long-term deal makes sense for Mayfield as well. He’s a really good starter, but it’s easy to envision a scenario where the Browns start to look for alternative options if he fails to lead them on a deep postseason run. Inking a long-term deal now will prevent that narrative from emerging in Cleveland.

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